Isanti Soil & Water Conservation District

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Isanti SWCD

Serving the residents and conserving our natural resources

The Mission of the Isanti Soil and Water Conservation District is to provide guidance, to inspire action, and to bring innovative resources to the table so that people can become leaders in keeping land and water healthy for future generations.
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Our Office is Now Open

Our office is now open to the public! We are here to help you Monday - Friday 8:00 am - 4:30 pm.

Staff may not be in the office at all times due to the outdoor nature of our work. Consider calling our office before your visit at 763-689-3271. See the Contact Us page for other ways to contact staff members.

Thank you to the Isanti County Sportmen's Club for their $10,000 Grant Match!

In 2020 the Isanti SWCD received a $284,000 grant from the MN Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) to go towards projects in the Green Lake drainage area. The grant requires a 40% match, totaling $189,000. The Sportsmen’s Club graciously provided $10,000 towards the grant match. On November 16th, Jim Fridstrom (pictured center) presented the match check to the Isanti SWCD board. This contribution will help get projects on the ground such as cover crops, wetland restorations, shoreline buffers, and more!

FILE BEFORE May 31 TO RUN FOR SWCD SUPERVISOR

This year, the Isanti SWCD has two Supervisor positions up for election. SWCD candidates appear on the ballot for the general election which will take place in November 2022. Individuals interested in natural resources and water quality should consider filing by May 31st, 2022 to run for the position of Supervisor of the Isanti Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD).

“Supervisors play an important role in how our community deals with a wide variety of resource management issues, including water quality, soil erosion, stormwater management, agricultural conservation and land protection” noted Tiffany Determan, District Manager with the Isanti SWCD. “Serving as a supervisor is a terrific opportunity for people who want a voice in how we manage our environment and place conservation on the land” she said.

To be a candidate for supervisor election you must: • File for candidacy with the Isanti County auditor’s office from May 17th through May 31st, • Complete the Minnesota Affidavit of Candidacy and pay a filing fee, • Live in the district you with to be elected to. Nomination districts up for election this year are District 2 and District 5. SWCD Supervisors serve four year terms. District 2 includes Bradford, Athens, and Oxford Township. District 5 includes North Branch and Isanti Townships. Supervisors meet monthly at public board meetings, generally held on the 3rd Tuesday of every month at 8:00 a.m. Many supervisors also participate in sub-committee meetings or represent the District in regional conservation groups and organizations. The primary responsibilities of Supervisors are to set the district’s priorities and vision while supporting the staff’s work to achieving their goals. The monthly time commitment can be roughly 4 to 12 hours, based on each Supervisor’s level of engagement. Supervisors are compensated for time and mileage for approved meetings. Additional information about the SWCD can be obtained by calling Tiffany Determan, SWCD Manager, at 763-689-3271 or by visiting www.isantiswcd.org

Ecosystem Services Market Consortium

The goal of the Ecosystem Services Market Consortium (ESMC) is to create ecosystem service markets that incentivize producers to improve soil health, benefiting both the farmer and society. What sets this program apart is its focus not just on carbon but also water quality, habitat preservation, and biodiversity production. It is set to launch in 2022. Producers that sign up for the program will be compensated for adopting new conservation and soil health practices. Call us to get started!
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Improving Green Lake Progress
We have made a lot of progress towards our goal of getting Green Lake off the impaired waterbodies list! 2021 was the first of a 16-year grant program to improve the health of Green Lake. The first phase of the grant is funding projects that have a direct impact on the lake.

We have made a short storyboard that will take you through the progress made on Green Lake.

View the Storyboard

Legislators Considering SWCD Aid

We need your support! Our State Legislators are currently considering SWCD State Aid. SWCD State Aid would be a standing, statutory appropriation to SWCDs from the Department of Revenue in the amount of $22 million per year. With the state’s $7.7 billion general fund surplus for fiscal year 2022-23 and improved economic outlook for the future biennium, this is the opportune time for establishing a permanent funding mechanism in the general fund for SWCDs. The SWCD State AID would get SWCDs statewide closer to fulfilling critical conservation needs in our communities. It will allow SWCDs to better plan for the future, better hire and retain qualified and credentialed staff, and increase our pace of progress in working toward our clean water and healthy soil goals. Over the last several biennium SWCDs across the State have been receiving temporary State funding from the Clean Water Fund. The temporary funding has made a massive difference in the level of services we provide to our community! The funding has enabled us to build a team to implement programs to keep our lakes and rivers safe and clean for future generations- a board priority and landowner demand. Please help ensure that Isanti SWCD and SWCDs across the State have adequate and permanent State funding! Here’s what you can do: contact your local elected officials. Ask them to support SWCD State Aid so that we can continue to work together to protect and enhance our State's natural resources! Click here to find who represents you! https://www.gis.lcc.mn.gov/iMaps/districts/

The Beauty of Oxford Township Lakes

Watch this video about the Oxford Township lakes in southern Isanti County. This area is minimally developed and there are several high quality shallow, natural environment lakes.

This video was created by the Lower St. Croix Watershed as part of their 2021 Virtual tour. You can click through the entire tour here: https://www.lsc1w1p.org/virtual-project-tour

Watch the video here

Congratulations!

Wyanett Township Recognized for Outstanding Work in Conservation

Congratulations to the Wyanett Town Board for receiving the 2021 Isanti Soil and Water Conservation District’s Outstanding Conservationist Award! Each year the Isanti Soil and Water Conservation District (or SWCD), in partnership with our state association, the MN Association of SWCDs, recognizes an individual or organization for their outstanding accomplishments in implementing conservation practices and improving Minnesota’s natural resources. This year the Isanti SWCD board of supervisors voted unanimously to award the Wyanett Town Board as our Outstanding Conservationists. .

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"Conservation is for All of Us"

Kevin Schlipp and his wife have been conservation minded for years. Therefore, when they started learning about cover crops in farmer magazines and from long time practicer Dave Medvecky (part of the Isanti SWCD board), they decided to try them. Kevin has been using cover crops for two years now, and joined the Isanti SWCD Cover Crop Program last year.

Kevin uses a cover crop mix of buckwheat, crimson clover, radish, winter peas, and some soybeans. He chose his mix using the advice of Dave and the NRCS and SWCD staff. When the buckwheat is in bloom the farm is a rolling field of flowers that attracts many bees. However, Kevin’s favorite benefit of the cover crops are not the bumbling bees on his property. Instead, he has noticed “very few weeds breaking out and coming through once the cover crop has been established.” This saves him time, money and chemicals. The weed protection of cover crops encourages Kevin to keep using them, as he says, “If I can get by with using less chemicals that is a motivating factor for me.”

When Kevin was asked why cover crops and conservation was important to him, he responded immediately: “Well, conservation is for all of us.” Cover crops improve soil health and water quality which benefits both the farmer and the environment.

Isanti SWCD Calendar

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Isanti SWCD Newsletter

For the latest happening at the Isanti SCWD, please view or download our newsletter.

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2021 Annual Highlights

2021 was a busy year for Isanti SWCD. Click here to read all about our most recent Conservation programs and priorities. We would like to send out a special thank you to all our Federal, State, and Local partners who support our mission to preserve, protect and enhance water quality, soil, and other natural resources in Isanti County. We’re already planning great things for 2022 including targeted agricultural outreach, lakeshore restorations on Green Lake, and conservation planning in the Lower St. Croix Watershed.

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KBEK Radio Interview

One of our conservation technicians got to speak with KBEK about their work. Todd Kulaf discussed the Isanti SWCD and his conservation project at Spectacle Lake. Thank you to KBEK for talking to us! If you missed it you can listen to it here.

logo SWCD Isanti Final MWA 8       KBEK

  • View a map of all completed SWCD projects. Click on individual projects to read more about them.
    We have made a lot of progress towards our goal of getting Green Lake off the impaired waterbodies list! 2021 was the first of a 16-year grant program to improve the health of Green Lake. We have made a short storyboard that will take you through everything we have done on Green Lake.
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    Oak wilt, caused by the non-native fungus Ceratocystis fagacearum, is responsible for killing large numbers of oak trees annually in Minnesota. Oak Wilt is most severe in red oak group species such as Northern Red Oak and Northern Pin Oak. The Isanti County Parks Department has put together this brochure as a guide for managing Oak wilt: Oak Wilt in Isanti County To learn more and see good photos of diseased trees, you can also visit the U of M Residents can call the SWCD and the Isanti County Parks Department for names of contractors who can help with trees and root trenching on your property.
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    The Isanti SWCD rents a seed drill suitable for planting native grasses and wildflowers. Cost is $12/acre. Rental must be within 20 miles of the City of Isanti. Rental has a $150 minimum fee within Isanti County. Rental minimum outside of Isanti county is $250. A $161.81 damage deposit is required at the time of rental. For safety reasons, we ask that you don't drive over 20 mph while towing the seeder. Call Matthew Remer at 763-689-3271 to schedule.
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    The Isanti SWCD can help you with conservation efforts on your property with guidance and financial assistance.We are here for your questions and to help.
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    Enhance your property with trees that are especially suited to your property. Container, bare root and seedlings are all available through the Isanti SWCD. The Isanti SWCD tree sale is now open for all your landscaping and conservation needs.